Binding Review: 08-09 Rome Madison
06 Mar, 2008
Location: Keystone, Colorado & Loveland, Colorado
Snow Conditions: Snowing with hard groomed to packed powder conditions on the runs.
Setup: I rode the Rome Madison bindings on the Rome Blue and my Vans Omni Focus boots (also rode the Rome Vamp boots with this setup).
2nd setup: Rome Madisons with my Vans Omni Focus boots on the Rome Anthem.
Time to set up the binding: Average time
Fit: I have no problems with the Madison’s fitting my boots, whether I rock the toe strap regular or convertible.
First Impression: I love the Madison’s, 3rd year of these bindings and I’ll probably pick them up to go with my other 2 years of Madison’s.
Appearance: The Madison has always been a classy, functional binding that rips. Definitely for 07-08, I really like the look of it. The straps have some cool design features that collaborate well together. The look this year is kind of circles/bubbles formation on the highback and straps.
Comfort: This year the Madison’s introduced the new PF Contour Ankle strap, giving you better comfort closest to your foot and stiffer response on the material furthest from your foot. The ankle strap compared to previous years Madison’s is softer because of the more emphasis on the comfort and cushioning of the strap. The toe strap doesn’t have any pressure points and was not very noticeable when riding. The highback keeps with the same design giving women’s riders a binding that matches our calfs.
Functionality: The new ankle strap is amazing, it’s definitely a plus in terms of making the Madison a better overall binding with more comfort. However the combo of the material on the ankle strap being stiff and a new ratchet makes the contact point weak on the ankle strap. The couple runs I took with the Madison at Keystone, I had torn a hole through the ankle strap and each time I ratcheted it down, it would go directly into that point and tear the hole wider. This only happened on my left binding, the right binding didn’t have the problem with the ratchet hitting that point.
Functionality Update: I re-rode the bindings over the weekend and the strap issue wasn’t as bad, however it definitely has a contact point it hits while tightening the ratchet. I had to pay more attention and just hold the ratchet so it went in without getting stuck. This time it didn’t tear and I am hoping over time it softens up and won’t be an issue.
Flex: The Madison keeps the same flex as last year, giving women a medium flex binding that offers support and response but without being too aggressive and stiff. It’s always been a binding to ride park with, offering a good lateral flex with give and take…but still capable of handling the entire mountain.
Response: The Madison isn’t meant to be a quick responsive binding since it’s more all mountain freestyle suited. But it does offer the rider the ability to adjust the highback rotation and give you more power with the highback down to the heel and toe padding. For me, the toe ramp allows me to really carve on my toeside edge without losing any stability. When I crank down my forward lean, I can drive onto my heelside edge of my snowboard as well.
Toe Strap: You can rock the Madison’s toe strap either regular or capstrap. Even as a capstrap it does grip your boot and hold it in. I prefer the regular toe strap when I ride the Madison’s so I rock it that way.
Overall Impression: I was a bit disappointed by the ankle strap in terms of it tearing, but I love the binding overall. In terms of a women’s binding that is solid for all types of riding, the Madison offers that. It’s a very adjustable binding that lets the rider control how they want the binding to behave.
Having owned and rode 2 pairs of Madisons that are still going strong…it’s a binding that lasts. So I was surprised to see a demo pair that wasn’t going to last. I hope to try them again and see if I got a bad set at the demo.
Check out the 08-09 Rome Madison for more information on Rome’s website.